Jane E. White-Kilcollins
Hilltop Elementary School
Caribou Schools
Caribou, Maine

Jane E. White-KilcollinsAs an instructional leader working in tandem with curriculum leaders on her staff, Jane Kilcollins describes her leadership style as “keeping informed about what is happening in classrooms without micromanaging.” She arrived at Hilltop Elementary School in 2002. Situated in a small town, the K-2 school currently enrolls 257 young children. By establishing Professional Learning Communities (PLC) at her school, Kilcollins has ensured that teachers have clear goals, a vision of how to advance student achievement, and weekly meetings during the school day. Known as PLC time, instructors use the meetings to examine data from academic assessments and plan ways to enhance student progress. This work “is proving to be beneficial to student achievement and professional development of teachers, as well as improving the climate of the school,” says Kilcollins. Based on research showing positive benefits of full-day kindergarten programs, she worked for seven years to launch such a program at Hilltop Elementary. The effort included visiting other schools, determining costs, and seeking school board approval. Kilcollins also has guided her staff to embrace comprehensive gathering, organizing, sharing, and use of information on student learning. Hilltop Elementary teachers now monitor literacy achievement by reviewing data on every student’s reading progress every 12 weeks. Kilcollins has a B.S. from the University of Maine at Presque Isle and an M.Ed. from the University of Maine at Orono.